a true legend
Re: YMCA director’s retirement
Jay McGinnis, executive director at the Sheridan County YMCA retires in August. I am grateful to know this amazing man — a true legend!
The Bible describes the fruit of the Spirit as love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance — a perfect description of the character of Jay McGinnis. He is also generous, a “Yes” man! “No” and “can’t” are not in Jay’s vocabulary.
If you have been to the Y, you know Jay. He has led the staff and members to be vital contributors to the people of Sheridan.
I met Jay when I was 7 in 1978. He made whatever activity he was a part of fun. If he was the teacher, then I wanted to sign up. Jay made us Y kids laugh and feel good about ourselves, even if we lacked the skills. Jay introduced me to the great sport of racquetball. He took us teenage Y kids to play in tournaments. All that time, he taught us humor, fun, acceptance, competition, friendship and Ultimate Frisbee.
I moved on to college and Jay moved on from program director to executive director at the Y. On my visits home, I learned that the only time you’d find Jay behind his desk is if he scheduled to meet you there. Even then, he’d walk around his desk to meet you face to face. Throughout his years as executive director, Jay shoveled the walks on snowy early mornings. On Sunday mornings, for Joy Junction Children’s Church at the Y, Jay gladly stepped in if needed to drive a bus to bring kids from home to the Y for church and back again. This summer, on a Thursday night in Story, Jay was at the sink doing dishes after the 50-plus Y campers had dinner. Jay serves and leads by example in multiple ways.
Jay’s influence on our family goes beyond what even he could imagine. One Christmas, my mother gave each of my three brothers (David, John and Jeff Hunt) a grey vest, just like the one Jay McGinnis wears. To them, never mind the brand name, it is their awesome “Jay McGinnis vest.”
Thank you Jay for investing your spirit, mind and body into the people of Sheridan. We are better because of you!
Carol (Hunt) Engle